811.111 Colleges 62/63

The Secretary of State to the German Ambassador (Von Prittwitz)

Excellency: Referring to the Department’s note of January 23, 1932,73 in reply to the Embassy’s note No. W 9435 of December 16, 1931, I have the honor to state that a communication has now been received from the appropriate branch of the Government74 concerning the desire of the German Government to send to the United States a number of German industrial students for the purpose of acquiring theoretical and practical knowledge in some special field of industry, agriculture or mining.

The following quotation from the communication referred to is given for your information:

“This Department appreciates that mutual benefit might arise if young engineers, technicians or specialists of one country are privileged to acquire practical experience along the same lines through actual employment in another country. This Department’s attitude in that regard was made plain some four or five years ago when it was arranged that a limited number of so-called industrial students desiring to come from various countries to gain practical experience in American industry would be permitted to take paid employment in the United States. Its liberal attitude in that regard was further evidenced by the fact that while such students were admitted for a period of one year, extensions up to but not to exceed two years were freely granted when it was shown that such students were actually pursuing the purpose [Page 336]for which they were admitted. This practice was continued until because of the business depression of the last two years large numbers of our own engineers, specialists and technicians were either thrown out of employment or were unable to find employment when they graduated from our engineering and technical schools. While the number of foreign industrial students in the United States was limited, it became perfectly apparent that they were in many instances occupying paid positions which otherwise would have been open to our own people who were unemployed. In view of this situation this Department was impelled temporarily to terminate the arrangement under which foreign industrial students were admitted and to curtail somewhat the extension of stay of those already in the United States.

“With this explanation, let me say that the proposal contained in the German Embassy’s note above referred to would seem in effect to revive to a limited extent a practice which for the reasons stated has been temporarily abandoned. The German note does not specify that the twenty-five students referred to would not take employment without wages, and, if such is the fact, the proposal appears to this Department as essentially the same as that formerly in operation. It follows, of course, that if the proposed arrangement so far as Germans are concerned was favorably considered a like privilege would necessarily have to be extended to the industrial students of other nationalities and all things considered, the Department of Labor regrets that because of continued unemployment in the United States it is not able to give favorable consideration to the proposal in question.”

Accept [etc.]

For the Secretary of State:
Wilbur J. Carr
  1. Not printed.
  2. Letter dated January 26 from the Second Assistant Secretary of Labor, W. W. Husband (811.111 Colleges 62/60).